TORONTO (AP) — Nazem Kadri scored twice and James van Riemsdyk got the go-ahead goal late in the third period to lift the Toronto Maple Leafs over the Tampa Bay Lightning 3-2 on Tuesday night.
Jonathan Bernier made 40 saves in his first career start against the Lightning. Van Riemsdyk one-timed Phil Kessel’s feed past goalie Ben Bishop at 15:57 of the third for his team-leading 21st goal.
Less than a minute later, Lightning captain Martin St. Louis had an excellent chance for the equalizer. He was stopped by Bernier’s left pad on a one-time shot.
Kadri scored twice in less than 8 minutes to give the Maple Leafs a 2-0 lead before the midway point of the second period, but Matthew Carle and Mark Barberio responded for Tampa Bay to tie it after 40 minutes.
Toronto avoided its fifth three-game losing streak of the season and halted the Lightning’s three-game winning streak.
Toronto had three straight first-period power plays, but had just three shots to show for it. The Lightning outshot the Maple Leafs 11-6 in the opening 20 minutes.
Tampa Bay had the best scoring chance of the first, short-handed, when J.T. Brown finished a 2-on-1 feed from Nate Thompson at 3:57, but Bernier was there to shut the door.
NOTES: Canadian Olympic hopeful and Lightning star Steven Stamkos missed his 36th game while recovering from a broken right leg. The Markham, Ont., native returned to practice Tuesday after missing Monday with discomfort. … Maple Leafs forward David Bolland (ankle) participated in his first game-day skate since getting injured Nov. 2. Toronto defenseman Mark Fraser was a healthy scratch for the 10th straight game, and Paul Ranger was scratched for the 11th consecutive game. … Six-time Canadian Olympic medalist Clara Hughes dropped the ceremonial puck before the game.